The film Contracorriente is a complex one full of intertwining storylines and external factors pushing on the characters to make them act one way or another. Michelle Obama’s quote about strong men not putting not putting down women to make themselves feel better is one that can relate to this movie, but taking it a step farther to say that men who are true role models do not put down men either is an important addition.

I think that any scene at the bar fully encompasses the way men put down other men in the film. Miguel and his friends…


There are many critical issues that plague the United States and the educational context. Among some of those issues include the gender gap in education and how it affects boys and girls in schools. The gender gap is an issue prevalent in all aspects of life in the United States, from the wage gap to representation in STEM or political fields. The gender gap in terms of education typically refers to the performance gap between girls and boys coupled with the biases teachers have for certain students in certain subjects. This gap is what continues gaps later in life, because…


My philosophy of education is founded on the idea that education and learning are cycles in a never ending process that shows us how we see the world around us. This holds true for the students, as well as the teachers. Imbedded in this cycle is how to create a “just” education, which benefits everyone involved in the process. Drawing from the nine blog posts written this summer, coupled with the discussions from seminars, I have noticed some common threads appear that I believe are important in building my philosophy of education for when I have my own classroom. These…


Our journey to Peru has come to a close, and I am currently sitting in my bed reflecting on my experiences over the past month. I have wanted to be a teacher since I was 8 years old, after having a fantastic third grade teacher, and this experience has only reinforced that I love teaching, school, and learning. However, school has been and always should be more than that. Attending school is more than simply learning, it is also important to remember that it includes a political, cultural, and social process.

School is not only a place to learn math…


We have officially left Lima and been in Cusco for almost a week. In this time, we have visited another Fé y Alegría school in a mountain town called Andahuaylillas. Our time here was much different than that of the school we visited in Lima. This school was in a much more rural area and drew students from all over, including students who would walk three hours down a mountain just to attend school. We met with one of the directors, who showed us a video of a young girl and her friend who live so far up the mountain…


For much of my life, it was instilled in me that the teacher is the person who stands at the front of the room dictating formulas and other seemingly useless information for students just to regurgitate for a test at a later date. Even some of my college classes are run this way. However, the two days I have spent at Fé y Alegría have disrupted these thoughts and made me think more critically on who the teacher in school settings, and what their role actually is.

On Monday, I was in an art class which was more of a…


Tuesday night we watched the Peru versus Scotland soccer game, which was exciting. Peru won 2–0, and every time they scored a goal our host moms brought us food!

Wednesday was our first full day at La Inmaculada, with no traffic delaying our arrival. I spent the morning in different English classes, which I really enjoyed because I was able to see different grades at work. The first class did the same thing as Monday, but the second class was in the language lab learning about how the world’s economy has changed. The last class was in the middle school…


Sunday was exciting, but exhausting. We started the day at Pachacamac, which was a sacred city from the time of the Incas. It was here that they worshipped Pacha Kamaq, or Earth god. The main part of the tour included walking around the Temple of the Sun, which is a trapezoidal temple dating back to the Incas. Although we could not go in due to damage from El Niño, our tour guide told us that there were human remains found inside from sacrifices. Due to the damage, there is also little known about the temple, coupled with the cost it…


Wednesday brought more seminar and language class. More of the same, but what are you going to do? We had lunch for the first time at UARM, which was interesting. We have to sign a sheet when we get there, and then we get lunch. It was rice and some type of meat, which I didn’t love so much.

We had about a two hour break before continuing on to Pamplona Alta, which is one of the poorest parts of Lima. It is known for extreme poverty and what we perceive to be a lack of necessities. In reality, the…


Sunday was a very touristy day. We walked around the center of Lima, learning about the history and culture of Peru. The tour was given to us by a history professor at UARM, which was nice because he was able to tell us what everything was, in addition to the history behind it. We also witnessed a Peruvian parade, complete with traditional clothes, music and dancing. It was an unexpected but amazing experience.

Alli Bernard

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